With the correct use and maintenance, you can prolong the life of your trailer for many years to come. Below is a guide to assist you with safety and the maintenance of your trailer.
*THIS IS TO BE USED AS A GUIDE ONLY. SA TRAILERS ACCEPTS NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR ISSUES THAT MAY ARISE THROUGH CUSTOMER TRAILER MAINTENANCE.
AFTER BUYING A NEW TRAILER:
Maintenance is required to the trailer after the first 500km and every 1000km thereafter.
Trailers must be serviced every 20,000km or annually whichever arrives first.
*Commercial use trailers should be serviced every 6 months.
PLEASE USE AN AUTHORISED TRAILER TECHNICIAN WHEN SERVICING YOUR TRAILER.
IF IN DOUBT WITH ANY CARE INSTRUCTIONS, DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CARRY OUT THE WORK.
BOLTS & NUTS
It is important to check all bolts and nuts after the first 500km and every 1000km thereafter, including but not limited to:
– COUPLING BOLTS & ACCESSORIES
– SPRING / SHACKLE BOLTS
– WHEEL NUTS
– BEARING NUT
– U BOLTS
WHEELS & TYRES
Ensure your wheel nuts are tight and regularly check the tyres for uneven or excessive ware.
Ensure your trailers tyres are inflated to the correct PSI.
Check your bearings for play and grease them regularly with high speed bearing grease.
Ensure correct tension through regular servicing.
(Every 6-12 months depending on usage)
If left unattended, incorrectly tensioned bearings can cause damage to your hubs and axles.
AXLES & SUSPENSION
Check your springs regularly to ensure they are in good working order. The bushes may require changing each service.
Check all nuts and bolts are tight.
Check your axles for rust and treat them with a kill rust primer to prevent rust damage.
Trailer brakes may require adjusting shortly after a trailer is purchased as new trailer brakes can bed in. This is uncommon but can happen from time to time.
It is recommended that the trailer is brought in to SA Trailers for a check-up within the first 3 months to ensure your brakes are adjusted and working properly.
Trailer brakes need to be checked every time your trailer is serviced (12 months domestic, 6 months commercial). Service times may increase for trailers that are used daily.
IF IN DOUBT DO NOT ATTEMPT TO ADJUST THE TRAILERS BRAKES – TAKE IT TO A TRAILER PROFESSIONAL.
ADJUSTING CABLE BRAKES
With cable brakes, the cable will require adjusting over time as the brake pads wear down.
You can do this by loosening or tightening the cable using the adjuster.
The cable should have just enough slack to fit your thumb between the hammer and cylinder
Trailer handbrakes are designed to assist with connecting an empty trailer on flat surfaces only.
They ARE NOT designed to hold a loaded trailer on any uneven surface.
NEVER rely solely on a trailer handbrake.
Use wheel chocks or keep the trailer attached to a vehicle.
GREASE AND LUBRICATION
Ensure all moving parts are greased regularly. (e.g. hinges, spring bushes, couplings etc.)
Failure to grease or WD40 spray hinges will cause them to cease.
To adjust a standard coupling you will need a flat head screw driver and a shifter.
Using the shifter, loosen the nut on the thread. Use the screwdriver to tighten or loosen the adjuster bolt as required.
The coupling should be as tight as possible on the tow ball whilst still allowing the trailer to be removed. Once adjusted, re tighten the nut.
To adjust a 4500kg coupling you will need a spanner or shifter.
Using the spanner, tighten the side adjuster bolt until the coupling is tight on the tow ball.
The coupling should be as tight as possible on the tow ball whilst still allowing the trailer to be removed.
Maintain your trailers paint.
When you see a scratch or bare metal, respray your trailer using an anti-corrosive (paint & primer in 1) that will prevent surface rust penetrating deep into the steel.
We recommend a Kill Rust Paint that can be found at your local hardware store.
Fish oil can be sprayed down chassis tubes to reduce internal tube rust.
*As trailers use different paint, please refer to the paint manufacturers specifications prior to maintaining your trailers paint.
*NOTE: NEW TRAILER PAINT MAY TAKE LONGER TO DRY AND HARDEN IN DIFFERENT CONDITIONS. WE RECOMMEND YOU LET THE TRAILER HARDEN FOR A FEW DAYS-WEEKS BEFORE USE.
LOADING YOUR TRAILER
When loading a trailer always ensure 60% of the load weight is in front of the centre of the axles.
If a trailer is too heavy at the back, it may sway at speed.
Always secure your load using rated load restraints.
OVERLOADING OF TRAILERS
Do not overload the trailer by exceeding the recommended Gross Vehicle Mass (the combined weight of trailer and load).
Always ensure the trailer is loaded with 60% of the weight forward of the axle(s).
Ensure the load is secured and cannot move during transit.
Check your draw bar, chassis and trailer body parts regularly for any signs of structural damage, fatigue, cracks in members or welds.
If you spot any issues, call us immediately. Should any damage or cracking be present, repairs must be carried out.
NEVER tow a trailer with structural damage.
It is recommended that trailers be stored under cover when not in use.
Always store the trailer with the front end higher than the rear to allow water to drain.
Always clean your trailer after use and never store anything inside the trailer when not in use.
Standard trailers are designed for general road use and will not be covered if used off road or not for their intended use.
We recommend that trailers be kept away from salt water or corrosive chemicals.
Ensure you buy the right trailer for the job at hand.